Washington state’s children’s health coverage law (Senate Bill 5093, adopted in March 2007) will provide affordable, comprehensive health coverage options to all children in Washington state.
Beyond coverage, this new law seeks to ensure that children will be able to see a doctor, encourages high quality care through a medical home, invests in outreach to find and enroll eligible families and declares goals for nutrition and exercise in schools. All components are critical to improving the health and well-being of Washington children.
Key features of Washington’s children’s health coverage law:
One unified program: Several health coverage programs are consolidated into a single unified coverage program for children. All children will receive comprehensive coverage, regardless of income or citizenship status. Benefits are comprehensive: medical, dental, vision, and mental health.
No waiting lists: Beginning in July 2007, all children in families with incomes up to 250 percent of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL) are eligible. Coverage for children is an entitlement: The state will provide funding to cover all enrolled children. No more caps or waiting lists!
Sliding-scale coverage: At a small cost to the state, families that currently lack affordable coverage options will now have a reasonable means of purchasing comprehensive health coverage for their children. Beginning in January 2009:
• SCHIP coverage is expanded to children in families making up to 300% of the FPL; families with incomes above 200% of FPL (for a family of four, currently $41,300) will pay a sliding-scale monthly premium.
• Middle-class families (those above 300% FPL) will be able to buy comprehensive coverage from the state at full cost.
This law takes effect in July 2007.
Read our complete summary of what the Cover All Kids Law means to Washington state.